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That was the year that wasn’t: a 2014 retrospective

If I were to sum up the significant events for birthers in 2014, I could end the article right now. 2014 is notable for it’s emptiness. So to fill up some space, I’ll talk about some of what they didn’t accomplish in 2014.

[Since this is being published a week before the end of the year, it may be updated.]

Cold Case Posse

Great expectations of some great release of information from the Cold Case Posse to occur in March of 2014 flew around the birthersphere, but the so-called “March reveal” never happened. In the wake of that disappointment, Posse video guy Mark Gillar Tweeted in April: “Between now and the midterms, shocking revelations will be brought forward by Sheriff Joe.” In June, pop singer and birther activist, and Cold Case Posse confidant Pat Boone pinned the time frame down even closer when he went on the record saying to Alan Colmes that the evidence that Obama’s birth certificate, the smoking gun, would be released by September. In July, Zullo spokesperson Carl Gallups said: “Been talking to Mike Zullo. Both the birth certificate and criminal investigations are still ongoing. Sheriff Arpaio is getting close to holding the press conference.” Expectations ran high for something before the November elections. Nothing happened.

In the meantime, local news media in Phoenix tackled Mike Zullo over a $10,000 gift from a source in his investigation. Add to that: the Cold Case Posse web site went dark for the Winter Solstice. Despite birther predictions, no anti-birther has offered to assist the Posse or to obtains its protection.

And to top it all off, Obama Conspiracy Theories ran a series of articles by former Cold Case Posse member Brian Reilly, castigating Zullo for unprofessionalism and erratic behavior.

Joe Arpaio

It wasn’t a progress-filled year for Joe Arpaio either. A recent court decision required Arizona to issue drivers licenses to undocumented persons with deferred action. A number of other anti-immigrant statutes in Arizona have been overturned, and Arpaio himself has said that his department no longer raids work places to find immigrants fake ID’s. Arpaio’s own lawsuit against Obama was dismissed by a federal judge. Just a few more items of bad news for Arpaio:

Orly Taitz


Retrospective retrospective

It has been on my mind that about this time of year, I usually write some sort of retrospective, a “year in birtherism” or “major birther stories of the year” article. I’m not so much inclined to do it this year. There was just one big birther story in 2012: “Obama re-elected despite birthers.”

My first retrospective article was published a year after the blog started: “Obama Conspiracy Theories 2009 Retrospective.” I wrote then:

If any one thing about the year was remarkable, it was the persistence of those who support these views. What started up as a few Internet blogs turned by year’s end into a new word, "birther" entering the vocabulary as a runner up for "word of the year."

2010 was such a disappointing year, I titled my retrospective “Not with a bang but a whimper.”

When I look back at things from this last day of 2010, I see not much cheer for the birthers. All their great hope lawsuits have been to the Supreme Court and been denied. Terry Lakin plead guilty and tearfully said that disobeying orders was not the way to get his questions answered. Taitz lost her bid for political office. National birther events haven’t generated enough attendance to fill a school bus. … It’s pretty pathetic.

I called 2011 “The year of the long form.”

Thinking back over the past year, I think no single event more influenced the birther movement than the release by the White House of a certified copy of Barack Obama’s original Certificate of Live Birth from Hawaii…

You can browse through earlier articles here: